Attendance Matters

Sept 2019 Attendance Letter

Attendance Matters




  • To enjoy and achieve
  • To be safe
  • To be happy and healthy
  • To make a positive contribution
  • For economic well being

Every absence leads to a break in learning.  Schools do not have ‘empty days’.

Learning today depends upon discussion, listening, practising – missed work cannot always be caught up.

School provides opportunities – absence robs pupils of these opportunities.

  • Pupils in school are safe – unsupervised absence/truancy can put pupils at risk.
  • It’s never too early to learn good habits for life including regular attendance and school is training for life.
  • Poor attendance in Infant, Primary or Junior school can lead to a habit of truancy or poor attendance in teenage years.


  • Arriving ten minutes late results in ten minutes of missed contact.
  • All late arrivals disrupt the day’s work.
  • Lateness can be distressing for your child.  It is vital that your child arrives at school on time.

The Law:

TRUANCY IS ABSENCE FROM SCHOOL FOR UNAUTHORISED REASONS – you may give your permission but it may still be illegal.

It is a parent/carer’s responsibility to make sure their child attends school every day.

The only exceptions that may be AUTHORISED include:

  • Illness
  • Medical visits (Copy of appointment letter should be handed into the school office)
  • Educational visits/school activities (sports, college visits)
  • Interviews
  • Work experience
  • External exams
  • Exceptional circumstances (family funeral)
  • Religious observance

Unauthorised means:

  • All day dental/medical appointments.
  • Waiting for plumber/electrician/delivery.
  • Looking after sick relatives or younger children (talk to us if this is an issue).
  • Any kind of work.
  • Shopping – even for school clothes or shoes.
  • Day away from school for birthdays.
  • Family holidays with no exceptional circumstances.
  • Going with a brother or sister to their appointment or staying away if they are ill.



  • Parents risk going to court to explain pupil’s non attendance.
  • Parents may face a considerable fine.
  • The school has to include absence rates in each pupil’s report and reference.
  • Involvement of the Attendance Officer who may want to meet with you.


  • Permission for holidays in term time may only be considered after an application to the Headteacher.
  • Authorisation is only given if time cannot be taken during school holidays.  Evidence from employers to support the application will be needed.
  • Please be aware that a two week holiday results in 50 missed hours of school and imposes a heavy burden on pupils who need to catch up.


Working Together:

If a pupil is ill:

  • Ring us on the first day of absence.
  • Your child should return to school as soon as he/she is able.
  • Send us a note upon your child’s return with the reason for the absence.
  • Your child will be welcomed back to school and depending on their age may have to catch up on missed work.

Pupils may struggle to attend school for a number of reasons:

  • Difficulties with work.
  • Friendship problems or pressure to truant.
  • Fear of bullying.
  • Family problems.

We can help to sort out these problems IF they are in school.


Parents/carers have responsibility to ensure their children attend school every day.  We need to work together to help you find a solution, whatever the problem.

Make attendance a priority.  Your child’s records are passed on through all schools they attend and to prospective employers.